springboxes made an exhilarating comeback to bounce back from a 15-point deficit at half-time Wales from the penalty Damian Willemse at 83rd a minute to conclude thrilling 32-29 win in the raucous Loftus Versfeld in the first test on Saturday night.
It was a tale of two halves, with the Welsh putting in a huge effort in the first 40 matches, making two opportunistic attempts to block Louis Rees-Zammit, while midfielder Dan Biggar converted, scored a goal and converted a penalty to keep the 18.-3 lead to the break.
However, the Boks’ huge effort in the second half, with the team finally turning on, allowed them to score four tries in the second 40 to seal what at one stage seemed like an unlikely win.
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“It was hard. They stopped our maces and we didn’t hit according to our plan. But we knew that they would come out like that,” admitted skipper Boca Sia Kolisi.
“I didn’t push myself too hard in the first half. I knew we couldn’t do what we wanted to do, and once we got it right, I knew the momentum would change. They controlled the game in the first half and forced us to play on their terms.
“So the way we reacted as a team was very good and the guys who came off the bench brought the energy we needed and the fight started. As soon as the hammers began to move, we began to move forward.
side eight Jasper Wiese was one of the few brightest representatives of the home team during the game, along with Willemse, who had an excellent first 40 points at the defender and second 40 points at midfield, but in the end it was Wiese who gave the go-ahead for the role of the best player. match reward.
“We didn’t start the first half the way we wanted, but we just said at half-time that we had to stick to the plan, and in the second half, I think we changed a lot,” Wiese said.
“We knew some things were going to take their course and we just had to stick with what we’re doing and we’ll get an edge over them. So give credit to the guys, they did a great job and I’m just really proud.
“Wales was huge. Hats off to them, they were very tough. We didn’t think it would be easy, but they made it very difficult.”
Missed a famous victory
Wales captain Dan Biggar was understandably very disappointed after the main whistle after his team had just missed out on what could have been a famous win, but admitted that his team made life difficult for themselves in the second half.
“It was a huge effort, given that we were written off from the first minute, so we are very disappointed. There were probably a few key moments towards the end that cost us,” Biggar explained.
“We caused a little pressure on ourselves in the second half and couldn’t get out of it. We still had a couple of moments, and we just made a mistake in these key decisions.
“In the first half, we did not give South Africa a large amount. We were accurate and played in the right areas of the field. We took a risk, we didn’t want to make the game difficult and we knew it was going to be a match of attrition.”
“One thing we were a little disappointed with was our discipline. We conceded a lot of penalties and put pressure on ourselves.”